Standards and Procedures for Retention, Tenure, and Promotion 2007/2008

Department of Religious Studies
Standards and Procedures
Retention, Tenure, and Promotion
The Department of Religious Studies at California State University, Chico affirms the University’s Mission Statement.
“California State University, Chico is a comprehensive university principally serving Northern California, our state
and nation through excellence in instruction, research, creative activity, and public service.
The University is committed to assist students in their search for knowledge and understanding and to prepare them
with the attitudes, skills, and habits of lifelong learning in order to assume responsibility in a democratic community
and to be useful members of a global society.”
Our first priority is the education of our students by creating and maintaining selected quality undergraduate and
graduate programs. We will be known for the purposeful integration of liberal and applied learning that provides
our students with the knowledge, skills, and moral and intellectual virtues that form the basis for life-long learning
and contribution.
We affirm the importance of scholarship and public service. We support the exploration of the frontiers of
knowledge, the integration of ideas, the connecting of thought and action, and the inspiring of students.
We make the results of these academic efforts available for public scrutiny by all our constituents. We will maintain
extensive continuing education and public service programs that serve the needs of our varied constituencies.
Priority will be given to the following:
Believing in the primacy of student learning, we will continue to develop high quality learning
environments both in and outside of the classroom.
Believing in the importance of faculty and staff, and their role in student success, we will continue to
invest in faculty and staff development.
Believing in the value of the wise use of new technologies in learning and teaching, we will continue
to provide the technology, the related training, and the support needed to create high quality learning
environments both in and outside of the classroom.
Believing in the value of service to others, we will continue to serve the educational, cultural, and
economic needs of Northern California.
Believing that we are accountable to the people of the State of California, we will continue to diversify
our sources of revenue and manage the resources entrusted to us.
Believing that each generation owes something to those which follow, we will create environmentally
literate citizens, who embrace sustainability as a way of living. We will be wise stewards of scarce
resources and, in seeking to develop the whole person, be aware that our individual and collective
actions have economic, social, and environmental consequences locally, regionally, and globally.
Faculty members who are under review and faculty members who participate on any RTP Committee representing
the Religious Studies Department are referred to the most current Faculty Personnel Policy and Procedures (FPPP),
particularly Sections 3, 4, 6.1, 8, and Appendix IV.
An updated copy of this document, “Department of Religious Studies - Standards and Procedures for RTP,” will be
given to all involved with the yearly RTP process at the time the original is forwarded to the Dean’s Office in
As noted above, it is the obligation of those under review to provide a dossier containing relevant documentation
regarding all levels of review and data relevant to the process of assessment (See “Dossiers” in Section 8.1.c.1 of
FPPP). The dossier should be organized consistent with the requirements of the FPPP and, where appropriate,
requests by the Vice President for Academic Affairs, the Dean of HFA or the Department Chair. In deciding upon
what evidentiary material to include in the dossier, those under review should choose items that most clearly
exemplify your accomplishments in every area under review without cluttering the dossier with material that does
not substantially advance the case for retention, promotion, and/or tenure. Consult the Chair of the Department RTP
Committee if you have questions about the relevance and organizational presentation of specific evidentiary
The following criteria will be the basis for decisions about retention, tenure, and promotion in the Department of
Religious Studies:
Contributions to the creation and support of innovative, high-quality, student-centered learning
Course organization and content; general knowledge of religious studies broadly conceived, along with knowledge
of the specific area of expertise and concentration for which the candidate is responsible; and effective
communication in the teaching environment are the indispensable data for the determination of quality and
contribution. Both appropriate lower- and upper-division teaching will be evaluated.
Curriculum and Program Development
Active participation in the development of the Department’s curriculum, and the curricula and programs of other oncampus, system-wide, and national and international institutions, where appropriate.
Student-Centered Outcomes Assessment
Outcomes assessment will be a part of the ongoing evaluation of the program in Religious Studies. All faculty are
expected to contribute by administering or completing appropriate assessment instruments, recording and reflecting
on the data obtained by such instruments, and providing documentation of these assessment activities to the
Department Chair as requested. Faculty are also expected to incorporate recommended changes that follow from
such assessment where appropriate.
Student Advising
Accessibility to students seeking informal advising is the responsibility of all faculty members. Processing of major and
minor clearance forms, graduation checks, and other paperwork related to specific advising is the responsibility of the
faculty member who is designated as the department's Academic Advisor.
Contributions to Elements of the Strategic Plan
These may include some combination of, but are not limited to, the following:
Enhancing the rigor and substance of courses and programs;
Strengthening of the major and minor programs in Religious Studies and other related disciplines;
Enhancing student support in the Department of Religious Studies, in part through the Religious Studies
Student Society;
Relevant involvement with K-12;
Relevant involvement with General Education;
Enhancement of appropriate instructional technology and the use of such technologies in the classroom;
Relevant involvement with community, organizations, state, educational, media, and other not-for-profit
It is critical to the University that faculty maintain and demonstrate disciplinary currency. One essential component
of guaranteeing such currency is involvement in appropriate disciplinary scholarship and/or scholarship related to
issues in teaching and learning in religious studies.. Scholarship in a department of religious studies at a
comprehensive university may take many forms, including but not limited to
A commitment to discovery, where the candidate generates and disseminates new knowledge and
understandings of the world;
Integration of knowledge, where the candidate synthesizes and communicates new and different
understandings of knowledge or technology and relevance, and develops and refines methods.
In Religious Studies, the pursuit of such scholarship will take the following forms:
Research and creative activities and publications (in print, video, and in electronic media where
appropriate), for example:
Book publication (to include peer-reviewed and refereed research monographs, textbooks,
translations, and chapters in edited volumes);
Publications in scholarly journals (e.g., articles and book reviews in refereed and/or peer-reviewed
The establishment of, or contributions to, refereed or peer-reviewed electronic publications,
including electronic journals;
Citation in other major scholarly work or publications of book review or review notes;
Presentation of papers at significant academic and related professional gatherings (relevance and
importance of the meeting will be a consideration in determining contribution);
Editorial work on scholarly and creative materials; and
Limited consideration toward tenure and promotion of publications in regional papers, bulletins,
newspapers, and professional societies.
Prizes and awards, for example: grants, fellowships, or awards from scholarly and professional
organizations recognizing the candidate’s contribution to the discipline of religious studies.
Activity in professional organizations, for example: significant participation in seminars, conferences, or
meetings leading to growth in the faculty member’s expertise; presentation of papers, talks, or readings at
professional conferences, seminars, workshops, institutes, special programs; service on committees or
boards of professional organizations; consultations or presentations of expert testimony of a professional
Appropriate utilization and enhancements of instructional technology.
For promotion to Full Professor, the FPPP demands “substantial professional recognition.”
Other contributions in support of Strategic Plan
Including, but not limited to, investing in and advancing faculty and staff development, enhancing academic
programs and learning environments, reaffirming the role of CSU, Chico as the anchor institution of the region
(including innovative research projects with appropriate linkages with other centers of excellence), developing
positive links to our community and region (including K-12 links), advancing the diversity aspirations of the
Other contributions not covered above that reflect service to the University and Community including, collaborative
and productive work with colleagues along with some combination of the following sorts of activities:
Membership and leadership of department, college, or university committees;
Service as a departmental officer;
Service in the administration of the college and university;
Service to local civic, educational, religious, or non-profit organizations and participation in local
community programs (for example, taking part in city government, organizing charitable activities,
addressing a church or other religious group, speaking at public forums, sitting on public panels and
advisory boards, etc. These activities will normally be considered less weighty than items 1-3).
For promotion to Full Professor, it is expected that candidates will demonstrate significant contributions
beyond their home department.
See I E; II B; and III above.
The Department RTP Committee's evaluation of the performance of candidates, with respect to the above four areas,
is based on the following materials:
Teaching and Research Portfolios
A teaching portfolio consists of a narrative reflection on the ongoing development of the candidate's teaching
philosophy/strategies/objectives and how these have informed the candidate's teaching. In addition to the narrative, the
portfolio should include evidentiary materials that illustrate how the candidate's philosophy/strategies/objectives are
brought to bear in his or her classes, assignments, and other learning experiences. These evidentiary materials should
include samples of course syllabi; samples of handouts, study guides, assignments, and exams; samples of graded student
work illustrating the faculty member's assessment and instructional feedback; samples of any other materials that the
candidate believes will help the committee evaluate the quality of his/her teaching.
Documentation of scholarship and professional growth and achievement is essential and will normally consist of
copies of relevant presentations and publications, evidence of program participation, and published reviews of work
(in conformity to the FPPP 8.1). Evidentiary materials should be indexed, and if copies are not included in the
dossier, they must be available immediately to the requesting level of review for assessment and evaluation.
Candidates are encouraged to include brief statements characterizing their research program, explaining, for
example, why a particular publication is significant, or how chairing a particular committee in a professional
organization contributes to their discipline and their own professional growth. Such narrative reflection helps one's
reviewers to contextualize the information contained in the dossier and to see how seemingly disparate professional
accomplishments cohere.
Classroom Visitations/Observations
Members of the Personnel Committee of the Department of Religious Studies will, in conformity with the
requirements of the current FPPP, attend the candidate’s classroom session(s) and/or, optionally, any special
lectures, and submit signed and written observation(s) and assessment(s) as part of the review. If the Chair wishes
to make an independent classroom observation report, this teaching observation report must be submitted to the
Department Committee preceding their deliberations and the writing of their report.
Written Evaluations by One’s Colleagues
Faculty members of any rank and in any department or program may submit written statements of information
regarding a faculty member under review. Such input, which must be signed and attributed to the author(s), shall
become a part of the Working Personnel Action File (WPAF) of the faculty member being reviewed and shall be
placed in the College Personnel Action File (PAF). All sources of information to be included in the file must be
identified. Individuals who serve on any level of RTP review on a given candidate in a given year may not submit a
separate (independent of the report issued by different levels of review) overall evaluation/assessment of the
candidate during that year. The faculty member under review may also submit written statements to his/her file.
Student Evaluations of Teaching (SET)
In keeping with the policies of the University (FPPP, Sec. 8.1b), appropriate evaluation forms for student responses
will be determined by the Department. In the overall evaluation of “Teaching Effectiveness;” SET results will be
weighted as specified in accompanying documents (FPPP, Sec 8.5.a.17.a).
Interview of Candidate
In conformity with the current FPPP, the Department Personnel Committee, with the Chair of the Department in
attendance, shall meet with each candidate. Even when not required by the FPPP, candidates may request (and must
receive) an interview with the Department RTP Committee, with the Chair in attendance. Minutes must be kept of
these meetings and shall become part of the current WPAF.
Revised and approved 9/06, JW, Chair, Dept. RTP Committee
Revised and approved 8/06, BG, Chair, Dept. RTP Committee
Revised and approved 9/05, JZ, Chair, Dept. RTP
Revised and approved 9/04, SP, Chair. Dept. RTP
Revised and approved 9/03, JZ, Chair Dept. RTP
Revised 9/02 (JZ, Chair Dept. RTP)
Revised 9/01 (JZ, Chair, Dept. RTP)
Revised 9/00 (BG, Chair, Dept. RTP)
Reviewed/approved 9/99 JZ, Chair, Dept. RTP